I started writing this post a couple days ago. I was feeling very positive that day. Last night I had a dream and I woke up and prayed about it and realized God may be asking something of me in this area that I am not able to do yet. I think He is strengthening my heart, getting me ready. So that is why this post starts out so differently than it finishes.
If you didn't know this-I have a mad, crazy passion for unity. In the family. In the Church. To me, there is nothing stronger, nothing sweeter, nothing better than unity. I believe it begins with honesty and transparency. Sometimes it requires emotional intimacy, sometimes not. In the last couple of years I have been so delighted to realize that God has this same passion for unity. (I know His came first) If you don't believe me, read John 17 again.
I love, love, love, that He is united with us. All of our unity with other people should come out of our shared unity with Him. I do not believe unity is just being in agreement. That is part of it, of course, but I think there is so much more to it.
Eph 4:2 Be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other's faults because of your love. 3Always keep yourselves united in the Holy Spirit, and bind yourselves together with peace. 4We are all one body, we have the same Spirit, and we have all been called to the same glorious future.
Col 2:14 And the most important piece of clothing you must wear is love. Love is what binds us all together in perfect harmony. 15And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.
1Pet 1:22b See to it that you really do love each other intensely with all your hearts.
Here's what I am thinking. I rarely do any of these things. Why? Because I am afraid to open myself up like that. Why? Because love HURTS. Why? Partly just because it is so fierce and strong and partly because WE DON'T USUALLY LOVE LIKE THAT so there is a very good chance people will just think we are out of our minds. I found it interesting how often love and peace were mentioned together. I have lots of growing to do because love and fear are still the pair for me. I am still so afraid of getting hurt, being embarrassed, being rejected, being misunderstood.
If we had strong, pure, fierce love for one another, the church would be a completely different place. The family would be a completely different thing. How many of us are still in it for ourselves? And as soon loving gets dangerous, we withdraw our hearts. We do not even let people really know us, let alone love us. We lonely and afraid, surrounded by our own families and God's family. This is wrong! Who is going to change it? Me? You?
Ok, I am being a little dramatic, but I still feel this heavy on my heart. A lot. Father, give us the courage and strength to love! Give Your people a vision of love. We are learning to serve the world and remembering to care for the poor but are we really united in Spirit and purpose and loving one another like You have taught us to do? Open our eyes and our hearts and change us Lord!